Creepshow 2 (1987)
Film: I was born in the late 60s, which of course means two things: I’m very very old and I was an impressionable teen during the 80s, which means, I am of the boobs ‘n’ blood generation! A time where ‘banned in Queensland’ was a badge of honour!
This film, Creepshow 2, came from that era and has a special place in my heart as it was one of the first VHS films I actually owned! I honestly cannot remember if it was a sell through video I got from Kmart of somewhere like that, or if it were an ex-rental that a video shop gave me (I worked in one and they gave me tapes now and again) but it got watched over and over again.
Creepshow 1 and 2 were both written by Steven King and directed by George Romero and have their foundations in the joy the two found in reading EC Comics as kids. The short version of that company’s story is that EC Comics made pretty violent comics and caused the creation of the Comics Code Authority, which featured on the covers of many comics for years, and also resulted in Mad becoming a ‘magazine’ rather than a comic (in format) because magazines weren’t subject to it and it’s restrictions.
Basically, Google ‘Frederick Wertham’ or ‘William Gaines’ for the full story.
Anyways, Creepshow 2 is an anthology film, and the three stories contained within are bookended by the tale of a young man waiting for something he ordered from the advertisements within the pages of his favourite comic, Creepshow, and as an issue of the comic flicks through the pages it reveals our tales. This section is mainly animated, but has a pretty awesome love action piece at first and the delivery man who delivers the comics is actually a fantastic mask, worn by horror make-up legend Tom Savini!
The first tale is titled ‘Old Chief Woodenhead’ and tells of a kindly old couple, the Spruces played by George Kennedy and Dorothy Lamour, who have a general store in a town which is on its last legs. There are heavy supporters of the local indigenous community, and are entrusted by their leader Ben Whitemoon (Frank Salsedo) to take care of their tribes greatest treasures, but unfortunately, the ne’er-do-well of the tribe, Sam (Holt McCallany) knows the Spruces have these treasures and has decided that perhaps he’d like them for himself…
The second story, The Raft, sees four friends (played by Paul Satterfield, Jeremy Green, Daniel Beer and Page Hannah) go to a secluded lake, late in autumn, to go swimming as the raft is still there until winter. What they don’t realise though is that there is something in the water… something hungry…
The final story, The Hitchhiker, tells of Annie Lansing (Lois Chiles) who has been cheating on her husband, but tonight has lost track of time and needs to race to get home from her lover’s place before her husband gets home. Unfortunately, she hits a hitchhiker (Tom Wright) on the way home, and leaves him by the side of the road, but his spirit pursues her with the sole purpose to punish her…
As is typical of these Tales of the Crypt/ Twilight Zone styled stories, the objective is to show a supernatural punishment of some sort paid out to those who have transgressed some kind of moral code… and it still works!! Of the three, I think I like The Raft the best as it is nice and concise
I do have to admit that a lot of my love of this is purely nostalgic, and realistically the first film is certainly the better film, but I still enjoy every watch of it. The stories are in no way as impactful as the first film, but it is still lots of fun, and well made in every way.
Extras: Crikey, does this little disc from Arrow Video have some extras on it:
Screenplay for a Sequel is an interview with Romero, where he talks about his love of comics, and how they influenced his career.
Tales from the Creep is an interview with make-up legend and actor Tom Savini about his work in the Creepshow films.
Poncho’s Last Ride is an interview with Daniel Beer, who played Randy in the episode ‘The Raft’, as he tells his anecdotes on his casting and the filming.
The Road to Dover talks to Tom Wright about his experiences as the ill-fated hitchhiker in the episode of the same name.
Nightmares in Foam Ruber (sic) sees us sitting down with Howard Berger and Greg Nicotero, the special effects team, and have them discuss their experiences of the production of the film.
My Friend Rick continues with Berger discussing his fandom of special effects legend Rick Baker, and with an accompanying personal anecdote.
Behind the Scenes is just some footage of the actual filming of the production with some nice behind the scenes bits.
Trailers and Tv Spots is the two theatrical trailers and one TV spot.
There is also an Audio Commentary with director Michael Gornick, which has some interesting information about the film within it.
WISIA: Creepshow 2 is a horror classic and I’ve already watched it hundreds of times!